One of the most advanced facilities in the region for comprehensive heart care, the Aster Centre of Excellence in Cardiac Sciences offers adult general cardiology, paediatric & neonatal cardiology, preventive cardiology, interventional cardiology, cardiovascular thoracic surgery, paediatric cardiac surgery, electrophysiology and heart transplant services.
Patients who were recently diagnosed with a heart ailment or recommended for a cardiac procedure or surgery can consult with our expert team at Aster Centre of Excellence in Cardiac Science to make an informed decision that will help clear your doubts and seek further course of action at Aster Medcity. We operate in a 100% Covid -19 protocol complaint environment.
Designed to function like an independent hospital, the centre has an outpatient wing, an inpatient wing, a day-care unit, dedicated Cardiac ICUs, dedicated cardiac surgery suites, a state-of-the-art imaging facility and a 24-hour Rapid Access Chest Pain Clinic to handle all emergencies.
The heart can lose its ability to function normally due to disorders/ diseases that are either congenital (by birth) or acquired. Called heart failure (reduced ability of the heart to pump blood to meet the body’s needs), these conditions of require medical and/or surgical management. Treatments for heart ailments are mostly life-long and one should always ensure that enough precautions/ preventive measures are taken so that there is no further damage to the heart.
When the heart disease can no longer be managed medically or surgically, a heart transplant might be the only way forward.
What Causes Heart Diseases or Heart Failure?
What are the risk factors?
Heart diseases may be either congenital (by birth) or acquired.
It’s always good to get your heart health evaluated, especially if you are above 40.
Congenital Heart Defects
Heart defects that are present from the time of birth, which include heart valve defects, problems with the heart’s walls, disorders with the heart’s muscle, which can lead to heart failure or defects in connection among blood vessels.
Congenital heart problems are defects, not diseases. The defect is caused when the heart or blood vessels near the heart fail to develop normally before birth. If the defect is severe, symptoms start showing during the first few months after birth itself - the baby may go blue and the blood pressure can plummet after birth. Other common symptoms include breathing difficulties, feeding problems and poor weight gain.
Minor congenital defects are usually diagnosed in a routine medical check up. It is mandatory to get the child treated and the condition medically/ surgically managed, as ignoring symptoms may lead to life-threatening conditions.
Aster Paediatric Cardiology
Led by a team of doctors comprising highly experienced Pediatric Cardiologists/ Interventional Cardiologists and Paediatric Cardiac Surgeons who offer expert treatment for comprehensive management of heart diseases in children and neonates.
Considered one of the best facilities for Paediatric Cardiac Care in the region, the doctors here have treated several children with rare congenital heart defects, from around the world.
Men and Heart Diseases
Men, those especially above the age of 65 are highly prone to heart diseases. Conditions like high cholesterol levels, diabetes, stress, hypertension, unhleathy eating, smoking and excess alcohol elevates the risk steeply.
Women and Heart Disease
The occurrence of heart disease is very high in women over 40 years old, especially after menopause. The reasons are usually stress, hypertension, coronary heart disease (blocked arteries) and an unhealthy lifestyle.
How Is A Heart Problem Diagnosed?
Understandably, a heart problem can be managed effectively – medically or surgically – only if the diagnosis is accurate. Aster Centre of Excellence in Cardiac Sciences has the best of diagnostic and therapeutic technology to ensure the best of treatment to patients.
Here’s how heart problems are detected:
• Cardiologist consultation
• ECG/ EKG (ElectroCardioGram)
• Chest X-Ray
• Stress Test/ Treadmill Test (TMT)
• Tilt Table Test
• Cardiac Catheterisation: Also called a coronary angiogram, a catheter is inserted into your heart to understand the exact problem and to decide upon what correction needs to be made.
Aster Centre of Excellence in Cardiac Sciences offers three cath labs including India’s first flat panel bi plane hybrid vascular cath lab and CLARITY cath lab for cardiac cathetarisations.
• Electrophysiology Test
Your heart’s rhythm or electrical activity is recorded to detect any unusual pattern in the functioning of the heart.
• Aster Centre of Excellence in Cardiac Sciences offers a state-of-the-art Electrophysiology facility that’s manned by a team of highly trained Electrophysiology experts.
• CT Heart Scan
Computed tomography or CT scan) helps visualise your heart’s anatomy.
Aster Centre of Excellence in Cardiac Sciences offers a 256 slide Philips iCT scan that delivers high-quality, high-clarity results.
• Heart MRI
A heart MRI helps your doctor to see the outside and inside of your heart.
Aster Centre of Excellence in Cardiac Sciences offers 3.0Tesla Wide Bore MRI that produces images of exceptional quality to help detect even the slightest problem with incredible accuracy.
• Myocardial Biopsy
The doctor uses a special catheter to remove a piece of the heart tissue for further examination,
Also called the pericardial tap, a needle is used to obtain a sample of the fluid in the sac surrounding the heart.Read less
Coronary Artery Disease
The most common of all heart problems, Coronary Heart Disease is caused when the coronary arteries or the arteries that supply blood to the heart get blocked. This results in a significant reduction of blood flow to the heart, depriving it of oxygen. Coronary Heart Disease can also be caused by atherosclerosis - a condition that leads to hardening of the arteries.
Coronary heart disease can cause angina or extreme pain in the chest, a heart attack or even sudden death.
People with metabolic syndrome are twice as prone to heart diseases, as this condition leads a cluster of risk factors that can cause cardiovascular disease and diabetes, including Atherosclerosis, peripheral vascular disease, diseases related to fatty buildups in artery walls, coronary heart disease, heart attack, stroke and type 2 diabetes.
Low levels of good HDL cholesterol and high levels of bad LDL cholesterol is not at all a good thing for your heart. It’s very, very crucial to control your cholesterol levels to prevent formation of blocks.
Here are a few simple ways to keep your cholesterol levels under control:
• Eat healthy; avoid high fat, oily food
• Eat food that’s high in Omega 3, like fish
• Increase the amount of fibre in your food
• Avoid red meat
• Use healthy cooking oil with high smoking point
• Exercise every day: walk for at least 45 minutes a day
• Keep a check on your body weight
• Drink at least 2 litres of water
• Avoid stress
• Medical management, if requiredRead less
Stress can actually destruct your body, especially your heart. It elevates the levels of adrenaline and cortisol, changes the way the blood clots and acts as a catalyst that increases the risk of heart diseases.
Here are some simple, practical stress-busters:
• Take time out to spend with your loved ones
• Think positive
• Set realistic goals for yourself
• Laughter is indeed the best medicine
• Exercise regularly
• Eat healthy
• Keep your body hydrated
• Prayers always bring you peace of mind
• Conquer road rage
• Do not depend on cigarettes, alcohol or drugs to reduce stress
• Sleep for at least 7 hours a dayRead less
High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure can cause serious damage to the heart (Hypertensive Heart Diseases) as it may lead to heart failure, arrhythmia (irregular heartbeats), ischemic heart disease (your heart doesn’t get enough oxygen), heart attack (when blood flow to the heart is interrupted) and cardiac arrest (the heart stops working, causing sudden death).
You can keep your blood pressure in control by:
• Tame stress – it’s the main reason for elevated BP
• Exercise regularly
• Eat healthy – avoid junk food, red meat and fried food
• Keep a check on the sodium content in your food
• Keep your body hydrated
• Spend time with your loved ones
• Praying and meditating will calm you
• Quit smoking
• Avoid Alcohol
• Medical management, if required
• Regular check-upsRead less
One of the major reasons for cardio vascular diseases, diabetes increases the chances of a heart attack or stroke. Some people with diabetic heart disease may not present symptoms at all.There is also a high risk of “silent heart attack” as diabetes-related nerve damage may blunt the pain.
Keep your blood sugar levels under control by:
• Eat healthy – avoid sugary, high-calorie, high-oil food
• Increase the fibre content in your food
• Drink lots of water
• Brisk walking for at least 45 minutes a day
• Keep your Blood Pressure & Cholesterol levels under control
• Quit smoking
• Quit alcoholRead less
Did you know that the nicotine content in cigarette narrows and hardens the arteries, obstructing free flow of blood to the heart? This can lead to serious heart ailments and even a sudden cardiac arrest. So remember, you cannot smoke away your stress. It will only leave you with more trouble and a damaged heart.
If there’s one thing that can cause mass destruction to your mental and physical wellbeing, it’s alcohol – in indiscriminate quantities. Regular use of alcohol in excess can cause arrhythmia or irregular beating of the heart and cardiomyopathy (disease of the heart muscle).
You may love rich food, but your heart definitely doesn’t. Junk food, fried food, salty snacks, red meat, fat-rich sweets and even your favourite desserts can have adverse effects on your heart, if you aren’t careful. Unhealthy diet leads to complications like high levels of cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes and obesity, which in turn become the reason for serious cardiovascular diseases.
A healthy diet comprises:
• Well balanced meals, at the right time
• High fibre food including pulses and whole grain food
• Lots of vegetables, mostly as salads
• Fruits (if your blood sugar levels are in control)
• Food rich in omega 3, like fish
• Lean protein like chicken and fish
• Nuts like almonds
• Skimmed milk
• Avoid red meat
• Avoid high-fat diary products
• Avoid food with excess sugar
• Avoid fried food and snacks
• Avoid aerated drinks
Think healthy food is boring? Try these recipes
Simple tips for healthy cooking:
Use olive/ canola / rice bran oil.
Using more oil doesn’t make the dish tastier – oil is just a medium to help food cook faster.
Opt for healthier cooking methods like steaming, grilling and dry frying.
If you prefer roasted nuts, make sure you dry roast them (roasting without oil).
Use whole-wheat/ multigrain flour.
Opt for brown/ unpolished rice. White rice is essentially just starch.
Use skimmed milk and low-fat dairy products.
A delicately spiced vegetable broth that will curb your mid-meal hunger pangs Heat a small amount of oil in a thick-bottomed pan. Add finely sliced onions, carrots, cabbage, beans, potatoes, salt and black pepper powder. Pour in water, close with a lid and cook till he vegetables turn soft.Strain the stock and keep it aside. Puree the vegetables in a blender.Boil the stock with a bit of pureed tomatoes, a stick of cinnamon, a bayleaf and a pinch of jeera powder. Add in the pureed veggies and finely chopped coriander leaves. Don’t let it thicken too much. Serve with multigrain toasts.
Grilled Fish with Pineapple Salsa
Fish is rich in Omega 3, which does wonders for your heart.Try this incredibly easy-to-make Grilled Fish recipe, which healthy and packed with flavours.
To make the marinade, add a teaspoon of ginger paste, a teaspoon of garlic paste, a teaspoon of chilly powder (according to your preference), half a teaspoon of turmeric powder, a teaspoon and a half coriander powder, a generous pinch of saunf powder (fennel, dry roasted and powdered), a pinch of jeera powder and salt to a cup of skimmed yoghurt. Mix well. Marinate fish fillets in this for around 10-15 minutes.Heat a thick bottomed pan, and pour in a bit of olive oil or rice bran oil (rice bran oil is rich in Omega 3 as well). Place the fish on the pan and cook on medium flame. When one side is cooked well, turn over the pieces gently. Remove from the pan as soon as the other side is cooked. You can drizzle a bit of oil on the fish when its cooking, if you want to.
For the Salsa:
Chop semi-ripe pineapple into tiny cubes. Add finely chopped onions, crushed red chilies, salt and mix well. Serve this along with the grilled fish.
Peppery Chicken Curry
Chicken is low on fat (lean meat) and hence a healthier option compared to red meat (beef, mutton & pork).Cut, wash and drain the chicken pieces. To this, add finely sliced onions, finely chopped tomatoes, curry leaves, crushed garlic and ginger, crushed green chilies, coarsely ground pepper, coriander powder,turmeric powder, garam masala powder, a bit of vinegar, salt and a table spoon of oil. Mix well and let this marinate for at least 30 minutes. Heat a pressure cooker, put in the marinated meat and sauté for a few minutes. You can add a bit of water so that it does not stick to the bottom of the pan. Add a bit more of water, close the lid and pressure cook (1 or 2 whistles – or until the meat is cooked).
You’ll love this low-fat, healthy version of the good old biryani.To make the rice: Boil the required amount of water (3 cups of water for 1 cup of rice). Add in a couple of sticks of cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, salt, lime juice and one and tablespoon of oil. Add the washed,soaked and drained rice into this and cook till the rice is three-fourth done. Drain the excess water and keep the rice aside.For the masala: Mix ginger and garlic paste, green chilly paste, chilly powder, coriander powder, garam masala powder, turmeric powder,salt, finely chopped coriander and mint leaves with skimmed yoghurt.Heat a thick-bottomed pan and add one and a half tablespoonsof oil, along with one level spoon of ghee. Add finely sliced onions and a bay leaf. Sauté till the onions are cooked. Add in the marinated meat and cook gently till the meat is almost cooked and the gravy thickens. Remove half of this into a dish. Add half of the pre-cooked rice to the pan. Layer this with the meat mix and add rest of the rice. Add finely chopped mint and coriander leaves. Heat a flat cooking pan and place the pot on it. Reduce the heat to minimum, close the lid tightly and cook till done.Serve with fresh cucumber and tomato salad.
Here’s the reason to fall in love with dark chocolates. A recent study has revealed that dark chocolate promotes blood circulation, lowers cholesterol and keeps your heart healthy. Add in the four heart-friendly nuts - almond, pistachios, walnut and peanuts and you get Nutty Love.Melt good quality dark chocolate and add finely chopped nuts to it. Mix well and pour into small heaps on a tray lined with butter paper. Let it cool.
Allergic to nuts? Just enjoy the dark chocolate!
Broken Wheat Kheer
Cracked wheat is packed with fibre and palm jaggery is a natural sweetener that’s full of goodness. Combine these two with a bit of coconut milk (yes, it is good for your heart: rich in nutrients and lactose-free, coconut milk contains Lauric Acid that lowers the risk of heart
disease) and you get a dessert you can indulge in! Pressure-cook a cup of broken wheat. Melt the palm jaggery with water, strain and add the syrup to the cooked wheat, along with a generous pinch of powdered cardamom. As it starts thickening, add coconut milk. Keep stirring and make sure it does not boil too much and split. Switch off the fire, leave it to cool a bit and enjoy.Read less
Low levels of Vitamin D is being increasingly linked to heart diseases like congestive heart failure and peripheral artery disease. So make sure you keep a regular check on your Vitamin D levels. And the best way to get it for free? Sunlight!
What Are The Symptoms Of Heart Disease?
You should seek immediate medical help if you or your loved ones experience the following symptoms
• Short breath: you may have difficulty in breathing
• Choking, gasping – even in sleep
• Excess Sweating
• Exhaustion: even the slightest physical exertion causes discomfort/ panting
• Palpitation: Continuous episodes of a rapid, fluttering, ticklish feel in the heart
• Dizziness/ lightheadedness
• Tightness and pressure in the chest: Like someone is exerting pressure/ suffocating you inside
• Nausea, vomiting, indigestion
• Swelling in your legs, feet and ankle
• Irregular heartbeats
Angina or chest pain: Feels like something is stuck in chest and crushing you, painfully. The pain may radiate to your back, hand and jaws. This may be an indication of a heart disease or an onset of heart attack. Never ever ignore this symptom; you need to seek immediate medical help – without fail.Read less
Aster Rapid Access Chest Pain Clinic
A 24-hour facility for handling all cardiac emergencies, patients brought in here are provided expert medical care by a team of trained cardiologists, emergency care physicians and nurses.
Aster Emergency Cardiac Care Unit
When every second makes a difference, time is the crucial factor in recognising and responding to a cardiac emergency. Timely intervention will not only save a life but help restore quality of life. The globally recommended target time to initiate treatment in an acute emergency heart attack is 60 minutes or less.At Aster Cardiac Emergency Care Unit we have defined a set of protocols to reach you within the Golden Hour and provide the right treatment.
The quality of life of a heart patient depends on how well his or her heart problem is managed. Heart problems can be treated medically or surgically – your doctor will decide the best possible way forward, after taking into consideration your diagnosis/ test results and health condition.
At the Aster Centre of Excellence in Cardiac Sciences, the doctors follow a unique Heart Team Approach wherein the entire team discusses every case in detail and create a customised treatment strategy to ensure optimal, evidence-based treatment to patients.
Angioplasty & Stents
Angiograms and angioplasties have become common events among the public at large. There are always a lot of misconceptions and confusions regarding the terminology as well as the procedures themselves.
Coronary Angiogram is a diagnostic procedure performed to identify any narrowing or block in the arteries that supply blood to the heart. Coronary Angiogram is done by injecting a specific kind of dye to the blood vessels, the dye is observable by taking a continuous X-ray video. The images from X-ray are analysed to identify blockage or narrowing present in blood vessels carrying blood to the heart.
Your doctor may prescribe a Coronary Angiogram if you experience following conditions
- Radiating pain in your chest, jaw, neck or arms
- Abnormal results seen in a heart stress test, ECG
- Problems related to blood vessel
- Injury to your chest
- Problems with valves of your heart which may require surgical intervention
Bypass Surgery or Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting (CABG)
Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting (CABG) is a type of cardiac surgery performed to treat Coronary Artery Disease, a medical condition caused by lack of blood supply to heart muscles, this happens due to narrowing and fat deposition in blood vessels. In India, coronary artery disease has become one of the major medical condition affecting the population below 60 years of age. Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting (CABG) is popularly known as Coronary bypass surgery. Department of Cardiac sciences at Aster Medcity, Kochi offers Coronary bypass surgery with the help of modern technology and experienced cardiac surgeon.
Who need to undergo Coronary bypass surgery?
Sometimes Coronary bypass surgery is suggested to you by cardiac surgeon if you have severe coronary artery disease and experience symptoms like;
- Severe Chest pain
- Cardiac arrythmias or Irregular heartbeat
- Shortness of breath
People who have Coronary artery disease are prone to developing blood clots, which, in turn could lead to heart attack.
There are some other factors taken into consideration when planning for Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting (CABG) for instance, past medical & surgical history, age and family history.
• Valve Disease Treatment
Surgical management of valve diseases using conventional method or minimally invasive balloon valvuloplasty.
• Electrical Cardioversion
Electrophysiological management of arrhythmia
Blood vessels are simulated so that they develop small branches and create a natural bypass around the narrowed or blocked arteries.
Ablation, used to treat abnormal heart rhythms, or arrhythmias,
can be performed surgically or non-surgically.
A small device that sends electrical impulses to the heart muscle to maintain optimum heart rate and rhythm, a pacemaker can also be used as a treatment option for congestive heart failure and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.
• Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillators (ICD)
Treats abnormal heart rhythms.
• Lead Extraction
Removal of one or more leads from inside the heart.
Left Ventricular Assist Device (LVAD)
The left ventricular assist device, LVAD or VAD, is a almost like mechanical heart that helps the heart pump oxygen-rich blood throughout the body.
Replacing the diseased heart with a healthy, donated heart.Read less
Living With A Heart Disease
It’s not easy to live with a heart disease, but your quality if life depends on how you manage the problem. You are the caretaker of your own health.
Here’s how you can manage the problem well:
• Regular check-ups & consultation with your doctor
• Adopt a healthy lifestyle
• Exercise regularly
• Maintain a healthy body weight
• Eat healthy
• Keep your body hydrated
• Control stress
• Keep your sugar levels in control
• Keep your Blood Pressure in control
• Quit smoking
• Avoid alcohol
Your doctor may recommend cardiac rehabilitation to help you embrace healthy lifestyle. A customised program, this includes exercise, education, advise/ support for making lifestyle changes and healthy diet.
Cardiac rehab may benefit you if you have:
• Cardiovascular disease
• You are recuperating from a heart attack
• Underwent a cardiac procedure like angioplasty or heart surgery
• An implantable device like pacemaker or defibrillator has been placed
• Have arrhythmia or abnormal heart rhythm
Cardiac Rehabilitation: Benefits
• Improves your quality of life
• Enhances the ability to carry out daily activities of daily
• Reduces risk of heart diseases
• Mental wellbeing: helps you overcome anxiety and depressionRead less
What sets Aster Centre of Excellence in Cardiac Sciences apart is its outstanding team of doctors comprising adult cardiologists, adult cardio thoracic vascular surgeons, paediatric cardiologists, paediatric cardiac surgeons, electro physiologists, cardiac and interventional radiologists. Multidisciplinary in approach, they take time out to listen to patients carefully and provide the best of treatment, with the help of ACLS/BLS/ATLS/PALS certified nurses, dieticians, rehabilitation therapists and qualified technicians.Meet Our Team
The Heart Team Approach
In order to ensure optimal, evidence-based treatment to patients, the doctors here adopt a unique Heart Team Approach wherein the entire team discusses every case in detail and create a customised treatment strategy.
The Heart Team Approach
The heart team at Aster Medcity is involved in shared decision making in complex cardiac care. The team comprises cardiologists of great academic repute, cardiac surgeons with vast clinical expertise and cardiac anesthetists who are leaders in their field contributing to excellent clinical outcomes. With a combined clinical experience of over 100 years of frontline patient care, they have varying clinical skills which caters to the full spectrum of heart diseases – the simplest to the most complex – and maximum patient satisfaction.
The shared decision making and adherence to international guidelines ensure that the well-being of the patient is best taken care of by the heart team at Cardiac Sciences, Aster Medcity.
Aster Centre of Excellence in Cardiac Sciences offers medical technology to ensure high-precision diagnosis and effective treatment
South Asia’s first OR 1 Karlstroz fusion integrated Operation Theatres with autopilot anaesthesia
South India’s first ICCA (IntelliSpace Critical Care and Anaesthesia) ICUs
India’s first Independent ICUs with a view
Level 3 Paediatric & Neonatal ICUs
Kerala’s first 4th generation 16 Slide PET CT with Time of Flight Technology
Philips EPIQ echocardiography machines for 2D and 3D cardiac imaging
256 slice Philips iCT scanner for Angiography
3 Tesla Widebore MRI
ECMO (Extra Corporeal Membrane Oxygenation)
Inhaled Nitric Oxide Therapy
Understanding Your Heart
Your heart, which is approximately the size of your fist, is the strongest muscle in your body and keeps working day and night, continuously, to pump blood through your body.
A beautifully and intricately designed engine, the heart beats about 100,000 times a day, pumping 6 litres of blood through your body, which in turn flows through 60,000 miles of blood vessels.
Here are five simple, easy ways to good health. And yes, they are free.
Sedentary lifestyle is one of the main causes of cardiac diseases. Low physical activity means low metabolism and accumulation of cholesterol in the arteries, which in turn may lead to formation of blocks in the heart.
So, what do you need to do? Simple. Just walk - for at least 40 minutes a day, without fail. And see how your body gets fitter and your heart healthier, by the day.Read More
Spend time with your loved ones
Technology has taken over our lives. It’s got us caught in its web so much so that we are increasingly spending more time with our gadgets compared to our loved ones. We prefer to ‘chat’ than talk, we use emoticons to laugh, smile and cry and meet friends on chat groups. At the end of it, we do not have time for anything, including taking care of ourselves. And the result? Increased stress levels - which means high blood pressure (hypertension) and higher risk of acquiring coronary heart diseases.
Did you know that 60% of your body is made of water? Keeping your body hydrated means keeping yourself healthy. Water not only flushes out all the toxins from your body, but also keeps you healthy and alert. It improves blood circulation, which translates to a healthier heart. Make sure you drink at least 2 litres of water every day – the difference will show.
A good diet is undoubtedly the key to good health. Recent studies have revealed that what you eat can actually alter the way your genes behave. If you love food,make sure your heart loves what you eat as well. Eat more veggies (especially green leafy vegetables) and fruits that rich in fibre, fish, white meat (chicken),heart healthy nuts and brown rice. Change the way you make food by using heart friendly oils like olive, canola or rice bran oil. Keep away from foods that have too much of oil, salt and sugar in it. And most importantly, eat right, at the right time.
Did you know that your body repairs itself while you are sleeping? A good night’s sleep calms you down, controls stress and blood pressure, keeps you alert, helps maintain youthful looks and most importantly, keeps heart diseases at bay.That’s why you should sleep – as they say - sleep like a baby. For at least 7 hours,everyday.